Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Owl Mania

Seems like the owl trend is here to stay - hoorah!!! I just made these 2 owl bracelets tonight with polymer clay owls from Doreen Willey. One of them is heading to my Etsy shop. Doreen was sweet enough to send me a few of these owls along with a few of her skull beads (more on those later). I must get a "thank you" out to her in the mail! Anyway, each owl is sitting on a "twig" bead and then I used carved jade rounds. I also added a mushroom charm - I liked how the spots on the mushrooms matched those on the owl's bodies.I thought I'd list all of my owl faves out there:

Here's a new wood tag in my Loose Feathers shop:
Here's a cutie from Green Glass Cafe:"Who's" finally made their way into the owl market? Nancy at Round Rabbit Extras, that's who:Erin at Every Heart Crafts is working on some new pieces that are sure to be a hoot!Here is an etched copper piece from Jennifer Stumpf:Humblebeads's is always a fave!
Gotta love Gaea!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Rings, and Connectors, and Birds - oh my!

I was burning wood this weekend, and added some new shapes to my shop. I have more birds to work on, so if there is a particular pattern you'd like to see let me know!

Thursday, March 26, 2009


I've been missing in action from my blog this week - it's been another crazy one! This is what I came home to today....Repairs to the water damage in my dining room. Since our house is like a zillion years old, there was no easy way except to break out all of the old plaster. Which is fine because most of the other rooms have been updated with drywall over the years. But what a mess! I don't like messes. I can live with being unorganized, but that is totally different than a dirty mess.

I thought I'd also share a pic of how the roof repair came out. It is the area under the dormer on the right - my pic is a little crooked. Since our shingles were discontinued, I think they did a pretty good job of finding an almost perfect match. I am trying not to be too anal about it....
The sun was out today and it was in the 50's so I took the dogs for a walk and got in the studio a bit tonight. I am hoping to get in there even more over the weekend!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

What a week!

Here's a peek inside my brain from this week:

class on Monday * roofers to start repair from leak last Fall * what's that? the shingles on our roof have been discontinued??? * interior contractor stops over * write a 2-3 page paper for online class by Sunday * Art Center Executive Committee Meeting * remember, you have to train for that 5K you signed up for * what's for dinner? * laundry * work * put air in tires * create new shop on Etsy * list things on eBay * get taxes done

Ugh! Next week doesn't look any better - have dentist appointment, class, hair appointment, Art Center Board Meeting.....

But what keeps me sane is time in the studio. I was happy to get my new Etsy site up and running this week, and I just listed these new pieces in my completed jewelry shop:

Here's a necklace I made with one of the polymer clay flowers I got from http://rubarbdesertdesigns.com/
Here's a simple vintage necklaceAnd to make myself happy, I made a necklace for myself. Lorelei alerted me to this pretty pendant from one of her faves, Jade Scott. Peacock feathers? Mine! I bought it immediately. Thanks Lorelei! The simple design came together perfectly with some stones I bought at the International Gem Show last Fall. The only disadvantage to purchasing strands that are heaped into piles on tables is sometimes you don't know what the stone is. I did a little research on this one, but haven't found it yet so if anyone can help that would be great! They are dark navy and brown. I separated them with some dark teal hex beads and then added a newsprint bead to one side to pull out the printed material Jade used in the pendant.Since my hubby has had an equally stressful week with work and school, I am stealing him away on a date tonight. A fellow Board Member at the Art Center has season tickets to the symphony here. She and her husband couldn't make tonight's performance so she offered the tickets to me. We have never been to the symphony here so I am looking forward to it and going out to dinner beforehand!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Introducing: Loose Feathers!

I am pleased to announce the opening of my new Etsy shop: Loose Feathers! Stop on by to check out my wood burned components for jewelry making. I also plan to put some destash in there.
There will be more components to come - such as connectors and "wheels" that could be used for a variety of things including a toggle clasp!

Please let me know what you think of the shop once you check it out. What you like, what you don't like, what you'd like to see in the future. I am really open to exploring a lot of possibilities here. Thanks!!!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Lorelei's Giveaway!

Visit Lorelei's blog for a chance to win this beautiful bracelet! This has been a popular design for her lately - and rightfully so! It's the perfect mix of a flower focal, leaf and wood. She has made this bracelet in many variations of colors and beads. So pretty!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Fun New Stuff

It's been a great weekend! Last week was full of stress and busyness for both Jon and I. Summer hours have already started at my work - they go from daylight savings to daylight savings. Basically, if you work and extra hour Monday thru Thursday, you can get out at Noon on Friday. What I have always done is wake up earlier and go in the morning because I'd rather have as much of my evenings as possible. But, it takes a while for my body to get used to this routine. But, the Friday afternoons sure are worth it!

So on Friday, I had to go to the Art Center and another store I sell at (My Style, Your Style) to drop off new merchandise. The sales and feedback from both places is very positive, so that certainly keeps me going. My sales on Etsy have been less than I though, but I know there's a lot of competition there. I am actually working on opening another store on Etsy that will be exclusively for my wood burned components and destash. Hopefully I will get it up this week.

Friday evening, Jon came home and suggested we take the dogs (who we feel we've neglected most of the week) to Petco so they could pick out some new toys. I couldn't resist this handsome tie for Biscuit! (Don't worry, Mocha's been around longer so she has a lot more accessories than Mr. B) Here he is in his usual "in your face" mode.... Great weather has also allowed us to take them for walks both Saturday and Sunday.
I've put in some studio time this weekend too.... While I don't have anything to show right now, I'll share some new things I've recently gotten. I already have 3 Fordite cabs, with more on the way! I found a few Michigan sellers so I felt pretty good buying from them. The more research I did on this stuff, the more I learned on how to watch for fakes. There's a seller on eBay who has a ton of listings, but he's in Thailand..... ummmm, yeah, definitely think that's reproduction there.Here's a new polymer artist I've come to admire: Barbara Fajardo. Got these beautiful textured flowers. She has an Etsy shop, as well as her own website.Lastly, I'm sure we've all seen the ads for Shiana in bead magazines - they are most well known for their flower head pins. Being they have a peacock as their logo, I had to check them out. They actually make pendants with their logo on them and I also got some peacock feathers and bead caps - all Hill Tribe silver.Okay, I'm off for my Sunday night ritual with my hubby - watching The Simpsons, King of the Hill, Family Guy, and American Dad!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


My husband is a "car nut". He works in the automotive industry and his passion is restoring old muscle cars. I cannot even begin to tell you how many different cars have come through our garage - Camaros, a Dodge Challenger, a Ford Torino, some old AMC's (if people remember AMC)... right now he is working on a Chevelle. Needless to say, our summers are filled with car shows on the weekends. Everything from the local drive-in to taking day trips to Detroit. I enjoy it too, mostly because they just don't make cars (or anything) like they used to!

I've been on the vintage/upcycling kick in the jewelry department lately, as many others have too, so imagine my excitement when Jon brought to my attention something in one of his magazines. A material called Fordite - here is the definition:

Fordite, also known as Detroit agate, is old automobile paint which has hardened sufficiently to be cut and polished. It was formed from the build up of layers of enamel paint slag on tracks and skids on which cars were hand spray-painted (a now automated process), which have been baked numerous times. In recent times the material has been recycled as eco friendly jewelry.

As you can see in the pic below, the cabs that come out of this material are amazing! They are becoming rare though, since the lines now have processes that do not produce this waste anymore. I am certainly on the lookout to snatch some up at a reasonable price to work into some designs! It's so thrilling to be able to combine both my jewelry passion with something my husband is passionate about!

Monday, March 9, 2009

My First Treasury

This is the first Treasury I have been a part of - at least to my knowledge - thank you MWestDesigns for including my bracelet!!!

I was unsure how to post a Treasury to my blog, so thank you to Lisa at Lucid Moon Studio for answering my request. She posted a tutorial on how to do it on her blog - check it out here if you are interested.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Just couldn't leave it alone....

One of the benefits of designing your own jewelry is: you can always redo or change something. I find myself doing this from time to time. This winter, I made 2 necklaces with layered pendants of filigree/Vintaj brass component/Hint silver charm - one to wear myself and one to sell on Etsy. I've worn the one for me several times and enjoyed it - it was very simple and went with a lot of things. The one on Etsy hadn't sold yet. :-(

In the meantime, I was thrilled when Hint offered a larger silver peacock pendant for sale and bought it. I also bought 2 copper etched peacock "coins" from Round Rabbit. Hmmm, now I had even more of these components that all looked nice together. So after a few days of brainstorming, I figured out an arrangement for all of them. I pulled a long filigree necklace I had bought at Target (blogged about it here). If you've been following my blog for a while, you know I like the raid the costume jewelry at discount stores. Sometimes I have buyers remorse after I purchase something - seriously, why would I buy jewelry if I make my own? So it's always rewarding when I can "personalize" one of these store bought pieces with my own style. I recently personalized a shell button necklace I bought at Kohl's by swapping out the pendant that came with it for a peacock shell pendant I had.

Okay, I'm getting to my point... I shortened the Target necklace, swapped out a few of the filigree pieces for better layering looks, and added the metal coin pendants (all peacock designs) from Hint, Vintaj, and Round Rabbit. I love it! I love the wood beads and metal together and it has a very gypsy vibe to it. Another thing you've probably learned about me is I am not shy about wearing large, bold jewelry! I love how a necklace like this will dress up jeans and a t-shirt on the weekend.
Other than that, I am enjoying a lazy Saturday. It's a rainy day.... My hubby is working overtime today so I enjoyed lunch with a friend and am now back home to play in the studio. I am trying to decide what to focus on. I need to bring a new load of merchandise to the Art Center. If I make anything new for Etsy today, I won't be able to get good pics because of how dreary the natural light is. I had a hard enough time getting an okay pic of this necklace. At any rate, I'm sure I'll have fun no matter what I do!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Weekend Update

My collection display:

I think I've been decompressing this week, from my hectic weekend. The Treasured Collections event at the Art Center was great! It was a lot of work, heading something like that..... My parents came into town to visit and attend the event - a good time was had by all. We had a lot of really cool displays: everything from traditional teapots, depression glass, and dolls to the more unique Peeps, army uniforms, even a glitter collection! Here are a few pics I captured.